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Skin Care Products > Articles > Skin Care Ingredients: What To Use & What To Skip!

Skin Care Ingredients: What To Use & What To Skip!

Posted On: - 2009-08-28 00:58:01

Skincare products, be they natural, organic or synthetic contain an exquisite variety of ingredients that claim to correct various skin conditions and give you a healthy and flawless complexion. However, instead of getting impressed by the fancy names of ingredients, it is important that you check if they would suit your skin or not.

While there are certain ingredients that can be bad for your skin that you should completely avoid, there are others that can be safely used in lesser concentrations. Also, contrary to popular belief, not all “natural” ingredients are good for the skin. Rather, different skin types react differently to ingredients and what suits one person might or might not suit another. But there are also certain ingredients that should be completely avoided.

Here are some common skin care ingredients that you should try to avoid using.

Silicone derived Emollients

Silicone emollients are often listed under the names of Dimethicone, Dimethicone Copolyol or Cyclomethicone. They have a tendency to clog the skin pores. This is because they create a watertight film on the skin surface in order to lock in the moisture. These emollients are used extensively in skin care products and cosmetics in order to make the application smoother. However, because of the watertight layer, it becomes difficult for the skin to breathe and with regular use, these ingredient can promote irritations and breakouts. Moreover, the layer also prevents the potent ingredients from other skin care products ability penetrate through the skin surface and show results.

Alcohol Derivatives
Alcohols are known to dehydrate the skin. Therefore, it is best to avoid using skin care products that contain alcohols as their primary ingredient. Alcohols like ethanol, ethyl alcohol, denatured alcohol, methanol, benzyl alcohol, methyl alcohol, isopropyl alcohol, and SD alcohol are solvents that are derived from petroleum and tend to irritate and damage the skin. Prolonged use of alcohols can promote the formation of brown spots on the skin and cause premature aging. However, there are certain alcohols like cetyl alcohol, stearyl alcohol, cetearyl alcohol and lanolin alcohol that are beneficial for the skin.

This is a strict no-no. Synthetic fragrances may make the product smell good but they often damage the skin and lead to irritations. Therefore, avoid using products that contain additional chemical fragrances. Also, don't be fooled by products that claim to have “no fragrances” because they may contain certain chemicals to inhibit the smell altogether.

The most common sulphates are Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and or Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES). Both of them are harsh detergents that are used in skin care products like cleansers, soaps and shampoos as a foaming agent. They create a good lather but strip off the natural lipids and moisture from the skin cells. Therefore,use mild cleansers like iS Clinical Cleansing Complex that contain natural ingredients and cleanses the face without making it dry.


It is a popular skin lightening ingredient used extensively in skin whitening products. However, it is not suitable for all skin types, especially sensitive skin. This is because it makes the skin thinner and thus increases its susceptibility to sun damage or damage by other stressors. If you want a fairer skin tone you can consider using the Vivite Vibrance Therapy, an advanced skin lightening product that contains restorative antioxidants to brighten and even out skin tone without the use of Hydroquinone. Moreover, it also helps to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It is absolutely great for hyperpigmentation without the use of Hydroquinone.


Parabens are preservatives that are added to skin care products to prolong their shelf life and make them last for longer periods of time. Since they are chemical formulations, they can irritate the skin and damage it. However, parabens in small quantities do no harm to the skin. Some of the common parabens are Ethyl, Methyl, Propyl and Butyl Parabens. Check through the ingredient list and if only a couple of them are present towards the latter end of the ingredient list, the product is safe to use.

Dr. Marilyn Syrett is a renowned physician and nurtures a keen interest in skin care and the effectiveness of skincare products. She believes that every women has the right to healthy and flawless skin. She has also reviewed several products from popular brand names like Obagi, iS Clinical, Clinique Medical and so on.